In a disastrous phone interview with Cosmopolitan magazine, Ivanka Trump played the entitled royal when asked questions about her father’s paternity leave plan, eventually hanging on up Cosmo as she fled from the “negativity” in the questions, saying it wasn’t “useful” to speak to the interviewer anymore if they were going to be like that.
Cosmo’s Prachi Gupta asked reality based questions like, “Hillary Clinton released [aspects of] her plan over a year ago. Why did the Trump campaign wait so long to release this policy?”
This probably stung, as Ivanka Trump had told Fox News on Tuesday evening a wild whopper of a lie that Clinton had no policies, “There’s no policy on Hillary Clinton’s website pertaining to any of these issues, childcare, eldercare, or maternity leave or paternity leave for that matter. There’s no policy that’s been articulated on how to solve the problem.”
In fact, Hillary Clinton’s policy (three pages of it) is exactly what you would expect from someone with her background of championing the human rights of women, men and children around the globe and pushing this issue as a U.S. Senator. Clinton’s policy helps families, not just women.
It was a short interview that began derailing at the second major question, when asked about not having paternity leave, which is a “great factor in creating gender equality. So I’m wondering, why does this policy not include any paternity leave?”
Ivanka replied that this was a huge step from where we are today.
Cosmo, “OK, so when it comes to same-sex—”
Ivanka, “So it’s meant to benefit, whether it’s in same-sex marriages as well, to benefit the mother who has given birth to the child if they have legal married status under the tax code.”
Cosmo, “Well, what about gay couples, where both partners are men?”
Ivanka told Cosmo to go read it online, “The policy is fleshed out online, so you can go see all the elements of it. But the original intention of the plan is to help mothers in recovery in the immediate aftermath of childbirth.”
Cosmo, “So I just want to be clear that, for same-sex adoption, where the two parents are both men, they would not be receiving special leave for that because they don’t need to recover or anything?”
And here begins the crumble where Ivanka laughed at the plight of two-dad families, “Well, those are your words, not mine. [Laughs.] Those are your words. The plan, right now, is focusing on mothers, whether they be in same-sex marriages or not.”
Sorry, not sorry, dads!
Cosmo pushed Trump on her father’s previous stances, things like saying pregnancy is an “inconvenient thing” for a business. Ivanka reacted with outrage that there would be any question about reality.
“So I think that you have a lot of negativity in these questions, and I think my father has put forth a very comprehensive and really revolutionary plan to deal with a lot of issues. So I don’t know how useful it is to spend too much time with you on this if you’re going to make a comment like that,” Ivanka said, trying to shame Gupta for doing an actual interview.
Newsflash, the interview is supposed to be “useful” for the people, not for Donald Trump and his glossy propaganda.
Imagine if Hillary Clinton said something like this when asked a benign question about a previous stance. This is not hardball, this is Cosmo, asking an easily foreseeable question.
It got worse.
Cosmo: I would like to say that I’m sorry the questions — you’re finding them negative, but it is relevant that a presidential candidate made those comments, so I’m just following up.
Trump: Well, you said he made those comments. I don’t know that he said those comments.
Cosmo: This is quoted from an NBC [interview] from 2004. I definitely did not make that up. I do want to talk to you a little bit beyond the plan, as well—
Trump: I think what I was — there’s plenty of time for you to editorialize around this….
Ivanka sputtered some more, and finally ended on the Republican Get Out of Jail Free card of suggesting that the interviewer was asking questions because they are on the other side. “I hope that, regardless of what your political viewpoint is, this should be celebrated.”
The old impugn the motives tactic. Yeah, it’s not like anyone would expect a presidential candidate to answer questions.
Transparency? There isn’t any. The Trumps expect to deliver propaganda and be fawned over. The Trumps reveal in interviews a troubling amount of privilege and entitlement. It’s practically, “How dare you question the King.”
Asked how Trump was going to pay for it, Ivanka listed off some generalities and before Cosmo could ask her how it impacts unemployment benefits to take from them to pay for his women-only leave policy that will actually incentivize discrimination in the work place, Ivanka fled.
“I’m going to jump off, I have to run. I apologize.”
Ivanka Trump hung up on Cosmo, fleeing like Donald Trump at an African-American church photo-op.
The entire Trump family suffers from an expectation of deference and an expectation that they should be allowed to make things up without being called on them. To question a Trump is to be an enemy, a political enemy with an agenda apparently- instead of someone who is trying to get to the bottom of a newly unveiled policy so that the American people can understand how it would impact them.
This was yet another disastrous Trump interview, wherein the entitlement problem and the fantasy problem caused Ivanka to flee the interview when it was just getting started.
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.